898. Iraqi Sesame Kleicha


When Noor asked us to jump on board and shake things up for this month’s MENA cooking club challenge and make a cookie, I was ready! The catch was that the cookie must be a VERY traditional cookie from our own cultural background. Instantly, Iraqi kleicha came to mind. Kleicha has been featured several times on MCW, from date rods and spirals,  fragrant coconut,  and earthy walnuts. This time it’s sesame kleicha that’s the main attraction.
Kleicha is one of those festive foods you would gather your whole family, friends, and even neighbors to make together the eve of Eid. It brings people together and forges bonds. There is something so basic yet nurturing and thriving in bringing people together over food.


For the dough:
3 cups flour
1 cup milk, warmed
1 cup butter, melted
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground mahlab, optional
2 tsp yeast
1 tsp sugar

For the sesame:
2 cups sesame,  toasted
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cardamom, powder
3 Tbsp orange blossom water
1 egg white


To prepare the sesame, mix well the toasted (cooled) sesame, sugar, and powdered cardamom in a bowl.
Stir in the orange blossom and egg white until it resembles wet sand; set aside.
To make the dough, in a food processor stir the the flour, mahlab, and salt to equally distribute.
Whisk the yeast and sugar in half a cup of the warmed milk, set aside for 5 minutes to activate the yeast.
Pour the yeast-milk mixture, and the remaining half cup of warm milk, and the melted butter over the flour mixture. Process until a ball forms.
Divide the dough into two balls, covering one ball in plastic wrap.
Roll on ball into a large rectangle. Spread half the sesame on the surface of the dough and press in lightly in the dough.
Cut the dough into rods, transfer to a baking sheet, and bake in a preheated 360F for 12 minutes until lightly browned underneath.
Repeat with the other dough ball and sesame.


 صحة و عافية


(Visited 169 times, 1 visits today)

15 thoughts on “898. Iraqi Sesame Kleicha”

  1. Assalamualikum! Kleic looks absolutely crunchy and the flower just made it so pretty! lovely! I just picked up Orange blossom water last week and have been thinking of collecting recipes to try that flavour.. I should try this on stove-top for now, I cannot wait for oven!:-P

  2. I've seen this around, but they are puffy with filling. I've actually never tried any, but I would like to. They look great, thanks for being part of this months recipe 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *